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Treron psittaceus

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Taxonomy [top]

Kingdom Phylum Class Order Family
ANIMALIA CHORDATA AVES COLUMBIFORMES COLUMBIDAE

Scientific Name: Treron psittaceus
Species Authority: (Temminck, 1808)
Common Name(s):
English Timor Green-pigeon, Timor Green Pigeon, Timor Green-Pigeon
Synonym(s):
Treron psittacea Sibley and Monroe (1990, 1993)
Treron psittacea BirdLife International (2004)
Treron psittacea BirdLife International (2000)
Treron psittacea Collar et al. (1994)
Treron psittacea Collar and Andrew (1988)
Taxonomic Notes: Gender agreement of species name follows David and Gosselin (2002b).

Assessment Information [top]

Red List Category & Criteria: Endangered C2a(ii) ver 3.1
Year Published: 2012
Date Assessed: 2012-05-01
Assessor(s): BirdLife International
Reviewer(s): Butchart, S. & Symes, A.
Contributor(s): Trainor, C. & Verbelen, F.
Facilitator/Compiler(s): Benstead, P., Bird, J., Davidson, P., Taylor, J., Tobias, J., Allinson, T
Justification:
The population of this species, which could be very small, is suspected to be declining rapidly, concurrent with the rapid reduction in its lowland forest habitat and intense hunting at least in part of its range (Roti). As a result, it is classified as Endangered.

Geographic Range [top]

Range Description: Treron psittaceus is endemic to Timor-Leste, West Timor and its satellite islands, Semau (although there are no recent data) and Roti, Nusa Tenggara, Indonesia, where it appears to be uncommon or rare, and apparently very local (BirdLife International 2001). It has been infrequently recorded during recent fieldwork, although it is perhaps overlooked owing to its inconspicuous and very wary disposition. It is thought to have declined recently throughout West Timor, but is more common in Timor-Leste (Trainor et al. 2004), being described as scarce to moderately common at all locations visited during survey work in 2003 (Mauro 2003). Flocks of 50 birds and exceptionally 140 have been recorded in Timor recently and one record of a bird well away from forest indicates it may tolerate degraded habitat (C. Trainor in litt. 2007). On Roti it is apparently rare—the first was recorded in 1969 (Mees 1975), subsequently one bird was observed north-west of Sipu in 2004 (Trainor 2005) and two birds were seen near Daurendale hamlet (Sotimori village, East Roti) in August 2009 (F. Verbelen in litt. 2012).

Countries:
Native:
Indonesia; Timor-Leste
Range Map: Click here to open the map viewer and explore range.

Population [top]

Population: The species occurs very patchily and is absent from areas of apparently suitable habitat. It's global population is precautionarily estimated to lie within the band 1,000-3,000 individuals (C. Trainor in litt. 2012), roughly equivalent to 660-2,000 mature individuals.
Population Trend: Decreasing

Habitat and Ecology [top]

Habitat and Ecology: It inhabits primary and tall secondary, lowland dry and monsoon-forest, mostly in the extreme lowlands, straggling up to 1,000 m (Mauro 2003, Trainor and Soares 2004, C. Trainor in litt. 2007). It is likely to be nomadic in response to the fruiting cycle of figs, and is usually encountered in small flocks containing tens of birds, exceptionally up to 140 individuals (C. Trainor in litt. 2007).

Systems: Terrestrial

Threats [top]

Major Threat(s): Loss of monsoon-forest has been severe in its range, and together, this and hunting represent the greatest threats to the species. The mountains of Timor-Leste were heavily deforested early in the 20th century, but habitat destruction has recently accelerated: an estimated 50% decline in remaining montane forest-cover occurred during Indonesian rule (1975-1999). Monsoon-forests now only cover an estimated 4% of West Timor, scattered in around seven unprotected patches that are continually declining in size due to intensive grazing and burning. Pigeons (including this species) are hunted extensively in Timor and have been in preceding decades during military occupation; the species is considered delicious and guns are widely available (C. Trainor in litt. 2007). It is a principal target of hunters on Roti where hunting pressure is intense (Trainor 2005).

Conservation Actions [top]

Conservation Actions: Conservation Actions Underway
Recent surveys have identified several areas in West Timor to be of conservation importance to the island's endemic avifauna, one of which, Bipolo (although now only c.2 km2), supports the species and another, Camplong, did until very recently. Another site, Gunung Timau, is subject to an initiative to include it within the Gunung Mutis protected area. Recent surveys in Timor-Leste have located it at approximately ten sites (C. Trainor in litt. 2007). The recently designated Nino Konis Santana National Park supports a population estimated to number in the low hundreds (C. Trainor in litt. 2007).

Conservation Actions Proposed
Conduct surveys for the species using tape playback in remaining monsoon-forest tracts in Timor-Leste (when security problems allow) and West Timor, to assess its current distribution, movements, ecological constraints, status and threats (Mauro 2003). Propose key sites for establishment as strict protected areas. Strongly support initiatives to establish a nature reserve encompassing Gunung Mutis and Gunung Timau. Initiate conservation awareness programmes to elicit local support for forest conservation and reduce pigeon hunting.


Citation: BirdLife International 2012. Treron psittaceus. The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. Version 2014.2. <www.iucnredlist.org>. Downloaded on 03 September 2014.
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